Undulating snow laden peaks of Himalayas, rolling hills and valleys dotted with lush coniferous forests and mellifluous sound of water streams flowing down deep gorges and ravines is what makes Uttarakhand one of the top tourist destinations in India. Being footloose in Himalayas in Kumaon and Garhwal is as much about getting close to nature as it is about reclaiming one’s self.
Uttarakhand with some of the finest hill stations in India, natural retreats and scenic villages make for an ideal escape from the din of the city life. One such charming little hamlet located just 25 kilometers away from the fairly busy and popular hill station Ranikhet is the Tipola Village, a village from where I come.
It may be that you’d find my description a bit flowery – and I agree that thoughts expressed here are inevitably prejudiced and subjective as I have spent my childhood and better half of life wandering in the lush surroundings of my village playing cricket in the terraced fields – which sadly exists no more as vegetation and nature has taken over our once lively playground – and angling for trout in the placid waters of Gagas, the lifeline of our community and of surrounding villages.
A tiny little settlement located in the Dwarhat tehsil of Almora district, Tipola is a beautiful village surrounded by green cover of pine forest. The total population of the village numbers just 300 with farming being the prime occupation of the residents.
Although Tipola is not a popular tourist destination, therein lays the charm and romance of my tiny little village. Salubrious ambiance, lush green forest, terraced fields and serene countryside along the Gagas River Basin makes Tipola a spiritually and mentally uplifting place, a place to slow down, to ponder and reflect a place to reconnect with one’s self.
Since the village is still untouched by tourism, hotels and resorts are difficult to come by and even the concept of homestay has not arrived. Yet if one is looking to spend a night here, camping for the night by the bank of Gagas River is a great option. Even rooms on rent could be arranged for in the village.
Things to Do in Tipola
Hiking to Jhandidhar
Situated at an elevation of approx 2150 feet, Jhandhidhar near Kunshyari village is one of the highest hills in the region. Offering sweeping view of the green valleys and rolling Himalayan peaks, Jhandhidhar offers very good photo ops to hikers and trekkers. The peak offers mesmerizing view of surrounding places including Ranikhet, Himalayas peak view etc. It is also the place where the most scared festival Navratra is celebrated by the nearby villages. It is located about 5 km from Tipola.
The bazaar of Tipola is the main market for Tipola and nearby village where people come to buy their stock of vegetables and grains
The Gagas River flows in the front side of the village and consolidated in Ramganga River further. The river is the source of water of nearby villages. The Gagas River is lifeline of the Almora district spanning 14 major streams. The 500 sqare kilometer long basin serve water essential for farming and other needs to population of over 120,000 spread in 350 villages.
There is two bridge situated in Tipola. First one situated in starting of the village over Gagas River in the way of Jalali Masi road & second bridge connects Tipola to nearby villages including Sanvara, Papara and GIC Silor Mahadev etc.
Referred to as Chauni, the jungle of Tipola is situated behind the village. It is spread around 3 km². In the past there was a cricket ground situated at the jungle where I as child growing up used to play with friends. But now the playground has been gradually taken over by nature and children seldom play there these days. The entire playground is now covered in dense shrubs and pine trees making it impossible to play there.
Temples in Tipola
Uttarakhand is also refrred to as ‘dev bhoomi’ or the land of the gods. It is said that in Himalayas, gods reside and you’ll find the region – be it Kumaon or Garhwal – dotted with temples where gods are revered by locals as well as pilgrims who travel from all corners of India and the globe to pay obeisance to the almighty and seek blessings to attain nirvana. In Tipola too, you’ll find several temples venerating local deities. They include Gawel Devta, Bhumi Devata, Rajyu and several other Hindu temples situated near Tipola. These temples are visited by most of the villagers during festivals or special occasions.
Shiv Temple in Dibav is the most popular and most visited temple in the region. It is a place where major festivals including Ramlila, Saptah etc are held and attended by large number of locals from nearby villages and localities.
Villages near Tipola
Sanvara & Papra
Placed about 1 km from Tipola, Sanvara is the nearest village from Tipola.
Situated about 2 km away from Tipola, Ponali & Baskana are the neighboring villages of Tipola. And Tipola, Ponali & Bashkana are part of the same Gram Panchayta.
It is one of the most populous villages in this region. It is situated about 2-3 km away from Tipola.
Situated next to Kunshyari Village, Chamini is one of the most beautiful neighboring villages of Tipola with panoramic views of the pine forested hills and terraced fields.
It is also one of the densely populated villages in this region. It is situated about 2-3 km away from Tipola. The village has the sole post office of the region.
Schools near Tipola
Government Intermediate College (GIC), Silor Mahadev
Located in Silor Mahadev, GIC – popularly called Naula School by the locals – is the only intermediate school in this region and almost every student of nearby villages go there to study after passing from primary school (5th Standard). GIC is situated about 3 km away from Tipola.
Summer from April to June: (Average Temperature: 30°- 40°C)
Temperature remains hot during summer but in the morning and evening periods the climate remains pleasant as the cool breeze generally blows at these durations.
Monsoon from July to September: (Average Temperature: 20°- 30°C):
The place receives heavy rainfall during the season. The rains bring in some relief after the hot summers and climate remains pleasant during this period.
Winter from October to March: (Average Temperature: 1°- 15°C):
In winter the temperature in Tipola remains very cool and pleasant. There is heavy fog and frost in morning time.
How to Reach Tipola
Road is the only way to reach Tipola. The village is connected to Ranikhet via Jalali Massi road. In order to reach Tipola you will get buses, cars and Jeeps from Ranikhet, the nearest major town. The fare is about INR 50 per person. Ranikhet is well connected to major cities like Delhi by road and regular buses ply on this route.
The nearest railhead to reach Tipola by train is located in Kathgodam which is approx 68 kilometers from Ranikhet.
Places of Tourist Interest near Tipola Village
Some of the more popular destinations nearby are Dwarhat, Binsar Mahadev, Almora, Kausani, Doonagiri, Pandhavkholi and Chaubatia.
Sanjay Manral is an avid reader and a travel writer who often writes on diverse topics related to travel and tourism in India. His articles and tips on traveling in India could be found on several travel magazines and blogs. In this blogs, he talks about his postcard perfect village and why you should “padharo uske desh” when you next travel to somewhere near Ranikhet or Almora.
P.S. If you think some information to be added in the above blog or something missing /corrections about the place so feel free to send the information at his id: email@example.com
He also requests that if you have some beautiful images or information of the places of interest nearby, then please email them to him so that the same could be updated for better travel information and guide. And you can also send the images of above mentioned villages ( Sanvara, Papada, Kunshyari etc.) & your images will be updated on this post.
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